Tuesday

Paul McCartney

Red Rose Speedway - 1973

After giving John all the attention with last month's Complete Lost Lennon Tapes series, I figured it was time to turn our attention to Beatle Paul and one of the wildly underrated gems in his vast catalogue, 1973's Red Rose Speedway. For years I'd ignored this LP whenever I saw it in the shops, most likely due to it's garish cover. Once I got wind that it contained a few unused tracks from 1971's magnificent Ram, one of my all-time favorites, I had to get my hands on it. Officially his second LP with Wings, Red Rose Speedway bridges the sound of the low-fi records McCartney made at the the start of his solo career with the grandiose, lavishly produced ones he would start knocking out with 74's Band on the Run. Of course that also means Red Rose Speedway marks the beginning of Paul's schmaltzy period, but thankfully this record only carries the weight of a couple such tunes - the worst of which, "My Love" sounds eerily similar to Carly Simon's "Nobody Does It Better", so really, it could be worse. The high points here, the ones that keep drawing me back to this record, are absolutely incredible. The trippy "Loup" (First Indian on the Moon)" could fit in easily on Pink Floyd's Meddle, "When the Night" is a slow burn that ends just as it starts to boil, while "Get On the Right Thing" and "Little Lamb Dragonfly" are excellent leftovers from the Ram sessions. With the addition of a few singles and B-sides from the era tacked onto the end of this remastered edition, you really can't go wrong. But don't take my word for it, have a listen yourself.

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thanks. Never given this one a try, beyond the hit on it. Looking forward to where you go next!

Magic Johnson said...

Very nice.

Anonymous said...

as you say very underatted...Big Barn Bed is a particular fave...

Pat Carty said...

One I'd missed JR, thanks for that. Still my favorite Beatle

ps said...

Interesting how dragonfly is almost like Harold Melvin in places?

Anonymous said...

I've never made the conscious effort to listen to Paul since... Band on the Run, probably.
But given your impeccable track record to date, I feel I should give this one a try.
Thanks for putting forward something I would never otherwise give the time of day to.
cheers and keep up the great work.
Taro N.

Kevin said...

I love your blog and am a regular visitor. I especially dig all the Lennon stuff and the Captain Beefheart rarities. Keep up the great work man!

If you have a minute please check out my blog at http://eclectic-grooves.blogspot.com. If you like what you see, can you add a link to my site on your blog. It would be greatly appreciated.

Take care, Kevin

JR HeatWarp said...

Wow! I'm truly amazed at the warm reception this one has received. Thanks to everyone who's left a little feedback on this LP. I hope you've enjoyed it as much as I have.

Kevin- thanks for frequenting the Heat Warps! I remembered your Steve Reid post from a while back over at Eclectic Grooves, and enjoyed the tracks thoroughly! I'll gladly add you to the list of Heat Warps friends and neighbors. Thanks again.

schlep said...

This, and Wild Life are my favorite PM/Wings albums. I don't even mind 'My Love' too much....
The extra cuts are nice too, thanks very much!

Anonymous said...

I totally agree on RAM.
It is THE Paul Mccartney record..and I couldn't believe it when I fisrt heard it.
RRSpeedway is very good in my opinion. best track probably "When the Night".
Great blog.
Juan